Introduction

Welcome and thank you for considering participating in this literary project. Below is a brief introduction to Territory and some information about how you might fit in.

Concept

Maps are powerful tools of representation and meaning-making. They are foundational to discovery but also to conquest and colonization. The map is not the territory; it is a reduction, a projection, a representation, and yet its promise of a neat objectivity is seductive, so much so that maps often mask and suppress the territories they describe.

Our core idea is to use the map as an object to inspect the paradoxes of representation. Each issue will have a theme and a collection of maps that embody that theme. You, our solicited writers and artists, are invited to respond to these materials however you see fit, all within the loose guideline of exploring the relationship between the map and the territory it represents. The actual issue will be a digital publication, an atlas that collects maps and their artistic responses.

The theme and maps are merely starting points. We encourage contributors to do their own map collecting, making, editing, deconstructing, etc. and to push beyond familiar genres and forms. For more details about what this might look like, read the Creative Guidelines below.

For a more ecstatic perspective on our project, read our Mission Statement. If you're into the concept, but aren't sure you want to contribute, sign up for our mailing list or share the project.

Creative Guidelines

Below are a few angles of approach to consider.

  • Compose a piece that responds to a map, either one (or more) we’ve curated for an issue’s theme or one (or more) you’ve selected for the same.
  • Create your own map(s), whether visual, textual, aural, or any other medium. This might mean the writing itself is a kind of map, providing access to some underlying territory. Or maybe the map is a form of writing. Stretch the definitions of map and territory.
  • Collaborate with others outside your primary medium to make something that is neither here nor there, but something strange and new.

You can respond on any dimension. Write a story that occurs within the physical space represented by the map. Write an essay investigating the map as an object. Write a poem that navigates by way of a map. In constructing your response or your map, you will necessarily create a fictive space, different than the territory you originally sought to map. Write into this difference. Play with “literalizing” the map, letting its faults and inaccuracies form your work’s sense of time, space, and reality. Play with the relationship between within and without. Let the map become the territory and vice versa.

The above is merely a way of providing some structure for those who seek it, while not constraining those who choose to explore in their own way. For a more detailed perspective, check out the What We Publish section in our general call to submissions.

We have no length expectations. Each piece should have its own creative goals that supercede length. If you have technical questions about file formats, check out the How To Submit section in our general call to submissions.

Issues

We're currently working on issues 7, 8, and 9, all of which are themed. To get an idea of what we've done in the past and how we're approaching future themes, click on the links below.

Timelines

We recognize that Territory is not a typical literary project and so we want to create timelines that give you space to research, toy with, or otherwise live in your work.

  • 6 months out - Settle on a map (or more). If you want to work with a map that's not in our existing collection, let us know so we can acquire reproduction rights.
  • 2 months out - Submit draft for editing and design. We will provide edits within 2 weeks. Depending on the visual complexity of your piece, designing and coding your piece's page can take anywhere from 1-6 weeks.
  • 1 month out - Submit final draft.

This means our publication calendar looks like this:

Issue No. Theme Publication Date Date to Receive First Draft
7 Alternate Earths February 1, 2018 December 1, 2017
8 Love June 1, 2018 April 1, 2018
9 Journeys October 1, 2018 August 1, 2018

Resources

Again, for background information about our themes and to browse through maps you might use, check out the individual issue pages. For a list of general resources (literary magazines, databases, books, etc.) check out our Other Territories page.

Lastly, let us (Nick and Tommy) be resources. Contact us at territorylit@gmail.com.

Sharing

If you feel a specific writer, artist, musician, etc. would be especially interested in / good for Territory, feel free to share this page and send an email introduction.

For those of you who participate in social media, we can be found on Twitter and Facebook.

 

Thank you for considering contributing to our project.

—Nick Greer & Thomas Mira y Lopez, editors